Voice Is the Next Big Platform, Unless You Have an Accent

It’s super funny that Alexa can’t understand my mom — until we need Alexa to use the web, drive a car, and do pretty much anything else.

My mother was born in the Philippines, my father in India. Both of them speak English as a third language. In the nearly 50 years they’ve lived in the United States, they’ve spoken English daily — fluently, but with distinct accents and sometimes different phrasings than a native speaker. In their experience, that means Siri, Alexa, or basically any device that uses speech technology will struggle to recognize their commands.

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